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Connect 4 Binary Clock 



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Connect 4 Binary Clock 

Written By: Michael Esposito 



f TOOLS: 

• 3/8" drill bit (1) 

• Any kind of Power Drill. Drill press, or 
Dremel (1) 

• Box cutter (1) 

• Soldering iron (1) 

• Wire cutter/stripper (1) 



© PARTS: 



Connect 4 game (1) 

Green LED (6) 
super bright 

Red LED (7) 

LED holders (13) 

Super glue (1) 

220 ohm resistors (13) 
Radio Shack Part #206-2340 

Arduino or clone (1) 

Electrical Tape (1) 

Solderless breadboard, half-size (1) 

Wired) 



SUMMARY 

Remember that old Connect 4 game sitting in your basement/closet/chest/Batcave? You've 
always wanted to upcycle that into a functioning binary clock utilizing the awesome powers 
of an Arduino, haven't you? Of course you have! Well, you're in the right place! 



This is a great weekend project that will provide you with a binary clock that is sleek and 



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Connect 4 Binary Clock 

nostalgic all at once. We focused on recycling every part of the Connect 4 game to 
exemplify our "green" standards, and be as creative as possible. The Connect 4 works 
superbly in displaying a binary clock because it has perfectly rounded holes to showcase the 
LED-based binary numbering system. 

You don't need many supplies to make this binary clock, and it's a great way to utilize an old 
Connect 4 game if you've lost some of the pieces, or simply want to show off your mad 
creative skills. And don't worry about the coding - which we struggled against in an epic 
battle between sanity and madness - we already have it laid out for you! There's not much of 
a time commitment and a fun result is waiting for you, so let's get started! 

Authors: 

Mike Esposito 

Luke Foley 

Deniz Pamukcu 

Many thanks to: 

- Marc de Vinck 

- Michael Lehman 
-TE Class of '13 



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Connect 4 Binary Clock 




You know you want to make a binary clock from your old Connect 4 game set, right? Well, 
this is the best place to get started! 




Take the Connect 4 game board and square it up to the box cover. 

Mark the centers of the 13 holes in the middle of the board. 

You will next want to find a drill bit that most closely matches the threaded part of the LED 
holder. Keep in mind that you can always re-drill a hole with a larger bit so err on the side 
of caution. 

Now get that drill! Insert the bit and drill holes in the marks you previously made on the 
Connect 4 box. Make sure you go completely through the box so that the LED holders will 
have no problem fitting flush to the box. 



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Connect 4 Binary Clock 







Remove the rubber stopper from each LED holder, and slide the LED leads all the way 
through the rubber stopper. 

Push the LED holders through the holes you just drilled, and tighten them down with your 
wire strippers, pliers or a small wrench. 

Now you can take the LED attached to the rubber stopper and place it in the holder. Make 
sure to push the rubber stopper into the LED holder until it can't go any farther. 

Make sure you test each LED with a 3.5V battery! 



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Connect 4 Binary Clock 










Push the thirteen 220Q resistors into the breadboard as shown. 

Remove the breadboard's adhesive cover and place the breadboard inside the box. Make 
sure it is on the bottom of the box, and it sticks! If there's no adhesive backing on the 
breadboard, just use duct tape. 

Measure out a positive and negative wire length from each resistor to each LED. Cut and 
strip the respective lengths of wire, and twist the positive and negative wires around the 
LED leads. (The positive lead is longer on LEDs!) 

Make sure you ground each negative lead to the grounding rail! 

Facing the back of the box, make sure the leftmost resistor is connected to the bottom- 
most LED in the left-most column. Then move vertically up the column before moving to 
the next column on the right. 



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Connect 4 Binary Clock 




• Soldering is optional - you could use electrical tape as well. 

• Solder each positive and negative lead to the LEDs to create a stronger joint. 

• Use the wire snips to cut off any excess lengths of wire. Remember, you want to make the 
connection as clean as possible. 




• Since the Connect 4 board has some protrusions, trace out the sections that doesn't allow 
the board to lie flat against the box. 

• Cut out the trace using the box cutter, and your Connect 4 board should lie flush against 
the surface! 



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Connect 4 Binary Clock 



• Get the code! 

• The code can be found on the Instructables link here. 








>k I 








Cut fourteen 6" strips of wire, and hook up pins #1 to #13 on the Arduino to the resistors on 
the breadboard - again, from left to right facing the back of the box. 

Use the last wire to hook the ground pin (GND) on the Arduino to the grounding rail on the 
breadboard. 







Take the 3/8" drill bit and drill a hole through the side of the OTHER box top (the one you 
didn't drill holes through in the previous steps). 

Push the box tops roughly half-way together, and feed the power cord through the hole you 
just drilled, and plug in the Arduino. 

Push the two box tops together to hide any wiring, and glue them in place with your 
superglue. 



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Connect 4 Binary Clock 




• Take the game's playing pieces and push them into the board from the bottom (the top wi 
most likely be inaccessible at this point). 

• Try to keep everything looking nice and pretty! We went with yellow chips covering the 
green LEDs, and red chips covering the red LEDs. Try other arrangements to see what 
works best! 



Step 11 





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That's all, folks! Have fun with your 
sleek and modern binary clock. 
Now go buy another Connect 4 
game, and see what other cool 
projects you can do! 

Check out my other projects on 
Instructables, 

and my blog at DoG Studios . 



This document was last generated on 201 2-1 1 -01 07:1 5:59 AM. 



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